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Design-Guideline Strategies for High-Pressure/High-Temperature Equipment

Topics: HP/HT

As the need for oil and gas equipment working in hotter and higher-pressure environments continues to mount, the effort to develop an adequate set of design, material, and validation practices continues to be challenging. More-rigorous stress analysis and design methods that more closely model fast-fracture burst conditions are needed to achieve safe, reliable, and cost-effective equipment designs.

Introduction

As oilfield equipment is subjected to more-severe and longer periods of cyclic forces (internally from irregular wellbore flowing conditions or externally from metocean conditions), many agree that fatigue life and monitoring for these conditions has to be a part of the design equation. This fact is mentioned in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, recognizing the two failure modes of a pressure vessel: leak before burst or a fast-fracture burst. Many oilfield design guidelines negated a need for fatigue analysis because of the long-standing practice of keeping maximum design loads and stresses well below two-thirds material yield strength, a practice that also keeps cyclic-loading issues well inside the “infinite” region on S/N curves in most cases. Unfortunately, this quasistatic design philosophy grows less accurate as the pressure vessel’s wall thicknesses grow or geometries become more complex when addressing high-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) conditions. As a result, many have turned to the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code for guidance. Divisions 2 and 3 of the ASME Code present alternative design methodologies to be considered as internal pressure and temperature increase. However, the designer, using the code, is still free to select which division to follow for his application.

This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper OTC 23943, “Design-Guideline Strategies for High-Pressure/High-Temperature Equipment,” by H. Brian Skeels, Kwok Lun Lee, and Anand Venkatesh, FMC Technologies, prepared for the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference, Houston, 6–9 May. The paper has not been peer reviewed. Copyright 2013 Offshore Technology Conference. Reproduced by permission.
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Design-Guideline Strategies for High-Pressure/High-Temperature Equipment

01 August 2013

Volume: 65 | Issue: 8

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